Arkansas Department of Education Division of Elementary and Secondary Education Updates to the Micro-purchase Threshold in Child Nutrition Programs

Memo Information

Memo Number
Memo Date
Memo Type
Child Nutrition
Regulatory Authority
USDA Policy Memo SP 02-2022; 2 CFR 200.320(a)(1); Ark. Code Ann. ยง 6-21-304
Response Required
Federal Programs; Superintendents; Principals; General Business Managers; Child Nutrition Directors/Managers

Primary Contact Information

Memo Text

ATTENTION: Co-op Directors; Elementary Principals; High School Principals; Middle School Principals; Secondary Principals; Superintendents; Child Nutrition Directors; Business Managers; Federal Program Coordinators


The purpose of this memo is to notify operators of updates and changes to micro-purchases in Child Nutrition Programs.


The United States Department of Agriculture has provided updated guidance on the federal micro-purchase threshold. Arkansas has a more restrictive state purchasing threshold.


The state purchasing threshold for bidding under Ark. Code Ann. § 6-21-304 for the 2021-2022 school year is $21,604.  Program operators must follow the more restrictive state threshold when purchases exceed the Arkansas purchase price as established by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education.  This price is adjusted annually based the percentage of change in the Consumer Price Index.


Procurement method



0 - $21,604

Formal purchases

$21,604 and above


Micro-purchase procurement procedures apply to the purchase of supplies or services when the aggregate dollar amount does not exceed the Arkansas purchasing threshold.


Micro-purchases may be awarded without soliciting competitive quotations if program operators consider the price for goods and services being purchased to be reasonable.


Things to consider when determining if a purchase is reasonable:

  • Compare to previous purchases
  • Have personal knowledge of the item being purchased
  • Compare to similar items being purchased


Micro-purchases must be distributed among qualified suppliers equitably. 


Formal purchase procurement procedures apply to the purchase of supplies or services when the aggregate dollar amount exceeds the Arkansas purchasing threshold.


Each district must have written formal procurement procedures.  Methods of formal procurements include the use of sealed bids or proposals.  Public advertisement is required.


If you have questions about the updates to the methods of procurement, please contact your Area Specialist at 501-324-9502.



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